Acta Vet. Brno 2012, 81: 37-42

Microbiological quality of broiler carcasses during slaughter processing

Irena Svobodová1, Gabriela Bořilová1, Radka Hulánková1, Iva Steinhauserová2

1Department of Meat Hygiene and Technology, Faculty of Veterinary Hygiene and Ecology, University of Veterinary and Pharmaceutical Sciences Brno, Czech Republic
2CEITEC - Central European Institute of Technology, University of Veterinary and Pharmaceutical Sciences Brno, Czech Republic

Microbial contamination of poultry carcasses can be influenced by many factors during transport and slaughtering. The aim of this study was to evaluate the impact of four processing steps (plucking, evisceration, washing and chilling) on the total viable counts (TVC), counts of Escherichia coli, Salmonella spp. and Listeria spp. incidence on broiler carcasses. A total of 160 broiler carcasses originating from one farm were collected during one year period at a Czech slaughterhouse and examined. Both TVC and E. coli counts decreased during processing from 4.6 log cfu/cm2 and 3.5 log cfu/cm2 to 3.7 log cfu/cm2 and 1.8 log cfu/cm2, respectively, with a major impact of washing on TVC and washing and chilling on E. coli decrease (P < 0.001). Both Salmonella spp. (6 strains) and Listeria spp. (12 strains, none of L. monocytogenes) were found sporadically in all processing steps followed. However, a decreasing trend was observed in Salmonella counts and Listeria spp. incidence during the processing. Thus, this study brings new valuable information on the dynamics of microflora during modern poultry processing.


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